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Starred Review. Griffin's fiction debut is a spellbinding tale of loss and hard-won redemption. When Tessa Gray's four-year-old daughter, Abby, is killed by a hit and run driver, there are no witnesses. From first meeting, Tessa distrusts the detective assigned to the case and, with her journalism background and ties to newspapers in nearby Boston, she begins to dig for her own answers to the identity of Abby's killer. Meanwhile, she vents her grief with Celia, a compassionate but reserved therapist. Celia's story, with its tragic undertones, unfolds parallel to Tessa's: Celia has a second marriage, a secretive teenage son and an ex-husband who makes her current family circle impossibly tense. At the office, Celia is practical and pulled together, but her home life buzzes with strife. Outside therapy, Celia's and Tessa's narratives remain separate until they shockingly intersect and lead the way to hard-won healing for both. Griffin's carefully crafted characters ring heartbreakingly true and her finely wrought plot will snare readers from the first page. (Apr.)
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Left with a stirring last vision of four-year-old daughter Abby, backpack slung over her shoulder “so wide her little head of curls stuck up like a turtle’s out of its shell,” magazine writer Tessa experiences near-paralysis caused by shock and grief in the days noted in her journal following the hit-and-run that claimed Abby. The bereaved mother starts counseling with Celia, a therapist Tessa first sees as so stiff and icy she finds herself questioning whether or not she can, or even wants to, be helped by one whose responses seem rote. Interspersed with Tessa’s journal entries and entwining the women’s lives in this stirringly believable epistolary novel are Celia’s own intimate journal entries revealing startling challenges. Winter passes, leading at last to new hope and life as Abby’s killer is surprisingly revealed and the two women, sharing “an unending connection,” bond in an unexpected way. Griffin’s strong addition to women’s fiction should be in demand. --Whitney ScottSee all Editorial Reviews
By far the best book I've ever read.... impossible to put down! A heartbreaking story with such a powerful messagePublished 7 months ago by Michelle Pellerin
This is a very well written book. With two different stories. Both Mother's have lost a child. One is in the midst of the rawest grief and one pushing the loss out of her life. Read morePublished 14 months ago by L. Phipps
Loved this book from beginning to end. I will recommend to anyone who has ever grieved loss in their life. Couldn't put it down. Thank you for a great story. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Mona W.
such a great read! i laughed, cried, and cringed with the characters! i felt the loss and love that so many people in life have had to endure and it made me want to hold onto my... Read morePublished 23 months ago by Mom1984
The depiction of a mother's struggle to find a manner with which to survive and deal with the tragic loss of a child is handled well and was quite realistic. Read morePublished on March 21, 2013 by ardnam
Well-paced, engaging and very readable LIFE WITHOUT SUMMER is a superior example of the genre commonly called "chick lit". The story is told from the perspective of two women. Read morePublished on January 17, 2013 by Susan K. Schoonover
This is a captivating story with twists. It's the story of two women whose stories intertwine as each is going through her individual crisis. Read morePublished on January 15, 2013 by Neal Reynolds
I had ideas about the story when I picked up Life Without Summer, Lynne Griffin's fiction debut, but I was wrong. I thought I knew what was meant by Summer, but I didn't. Read morePublished on November 10, 2011 by Barbara Sissel
This book shares two stories at the same time. One, a mother that has lost a child. The other, her counselor who is dealing with issues of her own. Read morePublished on August 22, 2010 by All Jazz